Ask an expert

Dr Paul Crea an eminent Sydney breast surgeon had the idea for this site. View his answers to common questions.

Young women and Breast Cancer

10% of breast cancer diagnoses are young women under 40. Find out more if you are concerned for yourself or a friend

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Welcome

This site is for women who have been diagnosed with or are worried they have breast cancer, their families, partners and friends. Also for women with other breast problems.

It provides practical information about breast cancer and guidance on "what to do when" written by women who have survived breast cancer.

 

We give you fast and easy access to other web sites, book and publication references and contacts for the breast cancer topics you are interested in. It provides practical information about breast cancer and guidance on "what to do when" written by women who have survived breast cancer. We give you fast and easy access to other web sites, book and publication references and contacts for the breast cancer topics you are interested in.

It is different because we ask women what they need to know and go look for it so we can help you. bhia.org is another site that has various information on breast cancer.
Thousands of women survive breast cancer. Read their stories or tell us about yours. Read a story | send us your story.

 

Additional Information

 

Breast changes / Signs of breast cancer

If you have a breast change, you may be concerned that you have breast cancer. In most cases there is nothing to worry about. However you should follow up all breast changes as soon as possible. If it is cancer, finding it early will mean a much better chance of effective treatment.

Possible signs of breast cancer include the following:

  • Lumps, lumpiness or thickening. For younger women, if it is not related to the normal monthly cycle and remains after your period. For all women, if this is a new change in one breast only.
  • Any change in the size or shape of the breast or dimpling of the skin. An area that feels different to the rest
  • Changes to the nipple, such as change in shape, crusting, a sore or ulcer, redness or indrawing of the nipple

> Read more about Breast Changes.

Cysts

A cyst is a fluid-filled sac. The fluid is produced and absorbed by the breast as part of the usual cycle of hormonal breast changes. Some women are more susceptible to breast cysts than others. They are more common in women aged 35-50 and in women who are taking hormone replacement therapy. (Note there is a view that cysts can be reduced by lower consumption of coffee and taking Vitamin B12). Cysts can be painful around menstruation

Simple cysts are not cancer and do not change into cancer. In rare cases, a cyst may have cancer growing in or close to it. This can be seen on an ultrasound, or found after the cyst is aspirated or drained.

You may have a cyst or a number of cysts without knowing it. Cysts do not usually need to be treated. Some women first detect their cyst as a painful lump and they may decide to have it drained if it is painful or troublesome. The breast surgeon will insert a fine needle into the cyst to draw out the fluid. This is usually simple and fairly painless. The fluid may be taken for testing.

> Read more about Cysts

Familial Breast Cancer

 

What is familial breast cancer?

This is where your family history shows one or more blood relatives who have, or have had, breast or ovarian cancer. These relatives could be on either side of your family. You should not count in-laws, adoptive parents or your step parents, sisters or brothers.

There are some features which potentially increase the risk. These are as follows:

> Read more about Familial Breast Cancer

 

What do i do now?

I found a lump 
I have been diagnosed
Preparing for surgery 
Post-operative treatment
Life after breast cancer
Metastatic breast cancer
Help for partners and carers

How can i Help?

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Research

Give input into Australian research funding priorities.

A study has shown that 20 mg controlled-release oxycodone is clinically equivalent to 200 mg controlled-release tramadol for postoperative analgesia after surgery for breast cancer. Read here.